Tuesday, December 15, 2020



Baldwin Wallace University revives acclaimed SPRING AWAKENING

If you didn’t have a previous opportunity, check out the profile of BWMT’s SPRING AWAKENING in 
American Theatre Magazine. 

(To read my review of the show go to:  
http://www.royberko.info/ and scroll down to the review.

Thursday – Saturday, December 17-19, 8 p.m. EST
Sunday, December 20, 2 p.m. EST 
Tickets on sale now at 


CPH Presents:  Songs from THE FIRST NOEL

Sunday, Dec. 20 | 7:30 PM EST

With pop, gospel, and reimagined classics, The First Noel tells the story of a family that must confront the grief of the past in order to reunite and celebrate the joy of the present. Join Tony Award winner Jason Michael Webb and CWRU/CPH MFA alum Lelund Durond Thompson for a special behind-the-scenes look of their musical The First Noel. This holiday concert will feature performances of select songs and exclusive interviews with the creative team. A moving and uplifting gift for the entire family!

Registration is required in advance. Viewing access is $10 per household. This special event will be streamed online through your computer, laptop, tablet or smartphone.
Blank Canvas Theatre presents DRIVE-IN IN A WINTER WONDERLAND
(A LIVE Multimedia, Drive-in Theatre Experience)

TWO NIGHTS ONLY!    DECEMBER 19 & 20    Saturday at 6pm & 8pm  Sunday at 6pm 
Rated: G (Bring the whole family)
Run time: 60 mins (no intermission)
No-contact, socially responsible, multimedia performance in the 78th Street Studios parking lot. 
Show will include actors dressed as iconic horror characters singing some of your favorite holiday songs. This drive-in show will feature a full live band, some of your favorite BCT performers, and the lighting and projection design that you have come to love. As well as our friends at NINJA CITY selling food and drinks!  What better way to get into the Holiday spirit? 
 $40 per vehicle (Please share a vehicle ONLY with those in your quarantine pod)
Advance sale only, so get your tickets NOW!
All audience members will remain in their cars during the performance. In addition to the speakers in our parking lot, the audio for our show will be transmitted directly to your vehicle’s radio. The show will be a one-act concert, allowing you to arrive and leave without ever exiting your car. We'll even be sending you a playbill digitally, as well as a special ticket to put in your windshield. This ensures that you don’t have to come into direct contact with any of our staff during your visit.  While the restroom facilities in the building will be available, please note that if you choose to use the restroom, you do so at your own risk and must wear a mask.
All parking is first-come, first-served.
Parking lot opens at 5:15pm for 6pm shows and 7:15 for the 8pm show.
To purchase tickets for this show 

Karamu House Announces Virtual Holiday Show
“Joyful: A Karamu Holiday Celebration,” a virtual performance, is available to watch at home from now until January 9, 2021.  
The show, an hour in length, will feature joyful, festive songs from around the world, with dance performances.
For tickets, which are $24.99 for 48-hour viewing, go the Karamu website:  
Cleveland Play House Theatre Thursday

Theatre Thursday
Thursday, December 17, 2020 | 7:00 PM - 8:30 PM
It’s movie night at CPH!  Join for a special screening of three original short films created just for CPH!

The 64 Keys
by Jeff Talbott and Will Van Dyke
A heartwarming tale of a kid, their beloved Christmas gift, and the joy of family and music. Inspired by a true story. Features Tony Award nominee Kate Baldwin, award-winning audio book narrator (as well as Broadway actor), Graham Rowat, and their son Colin.

The Christmas House
story by D.M. Pulley, film by Jimmie Woody with illustrations by Sequoia Bostick
On Christmas Eve, a brother and sister take a journey inside and discover the secrets within. This is an entirely Cleveland production, including illustrator Sequoia Bostick, costume designer Melody Walker, actor Tina Stump, composer Obediya Jones-Darrell. 
"Home" for the Holidays
by Christopher Gerson and Tarah Flanagan
Facing their first ever holiday together at home, long-time married couple and regional theatre actors Christopher Gerson and Tarah Flanagan reach out to friends and family to hear about their holiday traditions and what “home” means to them. 
Important Viewing Details:

  • The live viewing begins December 17 @ 7:00 PM and will be recorded.
  • In the event you miss the show or are registering late, a recorded version will be made available to you until December 20 @ 5:00 PM.
  • Events are streamed through your computer, laptop, tablet or smartphone via Zoom.
  • Registration is required in advance. Viewing access is $5 per household.
  • After registering below, you will receive a Cleveland Play House Receipt
  • Click here to learn more!



Sunday, December 06, 2020

Roy Berko: Here and there and everywhere…Entertainment in the Pandemic 12.6.2020

 Roy Berko:  Here and there and everywhere…Entertainment in the Pandemic


Tina Fey hosts NBC's One Night Only: The Best of Broadway, a primetime special celebrating the resilient Broadway community and featuring the Great Bright Way's top productions. The special airs Thursday, December 10, at 8 pm Eastern/Pacific. The two-hour show benefits Broadway Cares and features new performances from Ain't Too Proud – The Life and Times of The TemptationsChicagoJagged Little PillDiana: The MusicalJersey BoysMean Girls and Rent, with an appearance by the cast of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, plus Josh Groban, Jake Gyllenhaal, Billy Porter, Vanessa Williams and dozens more


BWU grad talks about SPRING AWAKENING

Colton Ryan, who appears in a lead role on television’s “Girl from the North Country”  talks about an ambitious production of Spring Awakening from his alma mater, Baldwin Wallace University.  American Theater magazine just chronicled how the musical theater department pulled it off, masks and all.  (Read my review at www.royberko.info)



Imagine cozying up by your fireplace (or space heater) with a warm blanket, mug of cocoa or glass of wine on a cold evening, and reading a play with some really cool people. The authors range from William Shakespeare to Caryl Churchill, and topics from murder mystery to musical comedy.
The Cleveland Actors’ Play Date (APD) is a local play reading group that does this once a month. Read the whole story by clicking HERE.



Theatre Thursday is LIVE interactive virtual program focusing on CPH's core values of artistry, community, and life-long learning, presented on the third Thursday of each month, hosted by CPH Artistic Director Laura Kepley and CPH Artistic Directing Fellow Stori Ayers. Theatre Thursday is a monthly interactive virtual event which will allow audiences to experience the artistry of CPH, connect directly with the makers of our work, and converse with staff and other audience members about the impact of our artistic work in our beloved community. 
Registration for Theatre Thursday is required in advance. Viewing access is "Pay What You Can," starting at $5. All events are live streamed via ZOOM and can be viewed on a computer, laptop, tablet, or smartphone. For more information about Theatre Thursday, visit www.clevelandplayhouse.com/theatre-thursday


Near West Theatre (NWT) announced the second show in its most unconventional season thus far: All Roads Lead to Home, a performance showcase of popular music, spoken word, and storytelling by local artists and five decades of NWT alumni.
Performances will be streamed exclusively on demand online from December 18, 2020 through January 3, 2021. Tickets will go on sale on December 18. The theatre employs a pay what you can feature for every performance, with a suggested donation of $15 per streaming. www.nearwesttheatre.org.



Rubber City Theatre will feature several new plays and adaptations of classic favorites in its 2020-21 season. The lineup of performances includes a new take on “A Christmas Carol,” a military couple love story “Love in Reserve,” and a musical version of Dante’s “Inferno” called “Heartbreakers in Hell.” Plus, a very-Akron show is included in the lineup — a rubber factory-themed adaption of “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” called “On the Line.” 
Though the programming is set, the shows’ formats haven’t been determined. “A Christmas Carol” will be streamed online for ticketholders, but the troupe hasn’t determined if 2021’s shows will take place virtually or in person at the troupe’s playhouse, at 243 Furnace Street. That will depend on CDC recommendations based on the coronavirus pandemic’s spread in 2021
Tickets to each show will be available to purchase on Rubber City Theatre’s website for around $20 a show, along with memberships for the whole season. A $30-$40 membership will discount ticket prices to $15 per production, and a flexible traditional membership ($100) includes one ticket to each production, along with readings and other members-only events. Here’s the full lineup, and read more about each play at rubbercitytheatre.com


Take a virtual tour of Broadway's ruins, learn more about Hamilton on HamilTour, and introducing Broadway's newest Trivia Night at Social Selects!  To find out more, go to:
View Selects!


A Christmas Carol: Radio Play by Nancy Cates.  Adapted from the classic tale by Charles Dickens.  Live and free on Facebook each Saturday of December at 7pm, beginning December 5.

Just tune into our Facebook page.   Not a Facebook person? You’ll be able to hear it anytime thereafter at this link or listen as a podcast on Soundcloud.


Saturday, December 05, 2020

The Loush Sisters (2020) @ Cleveland Public Theatre

 The Loush Sisters return to Cleveland Public Theatre via cyberspace!


For a number of years, the holiday season meant a trip to Cleveland Public Theatre to participate with the Loush sisters, Jolly (Liz Conway) and Holly (Beth Wood) for their bawdy, boozy, over-the-top holiday celebration.


The important words in that sentence were “participate with,” for the interaction with the ladies (and that is using the words in the nicest sense).  Yes, the actresses would pick out members of the audience and interact with them.  They would also encourage you to join them in “drinking up,” as they slugged down glass after glass of happy hour liquid.


The duos sexual innuendos, often aimed at themselves as well as members of the assemblage, brought about a few red faces and lots of laughs.


Well, the Loush “sisters” are back again.  This time in the age of pandemic, it’s via Zoom.  


For those who expected the newest version of Jolly and Holly’s rowdy shenanigans and good ol’ sister love, to be like the up-close and personal shows, they will probably be disappointed.


Conway and Wood put out full effort, but the electronic divide, plus a weaker-than-usual script, fell rather flat.  They tried.  They did.  There was a segment where they did refer to members of the audience, flashing pictures of the “live” audience on the screen.  Unfortunately, verbally referring to the people in cyberspace isn’t the same as intimidating and barbing them in person. 


For 45 minutes, the ladies, with the musical accompaniment of Michael Seever, Jr., sang such ditties as “Sisters,” “Fever” “The Trolly Song,” “All by Myself,” and a holiday medley which included such favorites as “We Need A Little Christmas,” “Deck the Halls,” “Walking in a Winter Wonderland,” “I Had a Little Dreidel,” and, of course, “That’s Why the Lady [my sister] is a Tramp,” while sloshing down the booze.


Capsule judgment:  Separated by a pane of plastic to protect themselves from spreading Covid, the Loush sisters referred to their sexual antics and skills, referred to the political and social world around them, sang with vitality, and tried to take their viewers on an escape from reality.  Part of it worked, part didn’t, but the duo can’t be accused of holding back.

November 27, 28 & December 2, 3, 10, 11, 17, 19 | 8:00pm (ET)

The virtual “house” will be limited to 65 “seats”

Tickets: $1.  Suggested Donation: $1 to $99